A phrase is a group of words that make a unit of syntax with a single grammatical function.

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What should you call your siblings who are each others' twins?

If you had a twin of the opposite sex, you would say "X is my twin [brother/sister]". It's understood that you are one of the two twins. But if you had two siblings who were twins of each other, and ...
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Origins of “schoolboy error”

In the UK, at least, we use the term "a schoolboy error" to mean a simple or foolish mistake. Oxford has it as: British informal A very basic or foolish mistake. It is used very frequently ...
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Does this adverb prepositional phrase modify the adverb, or vice versa?

The McGraw Hill Handbook of English Grammar and Usage (pg. 42) gives "We got there late in the evening" as an example of an adverb prepositional phrase ('in the evening') modifying an adverb ('late'). ...
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73 views

“He is no different than you and I” or “He is no different than you and me”

I have no difficulty in normal cases knowing whether to say "you and I"or "You and me." But this situation confuses me. On one hand, I can justify I by saying there is an implied "are" at the end: ...
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47 views

Due to lack of or due to a lack of

They abandoned the project due to lack of mobilisation. They abandoned the project due to a lack of mobilisation. Do you need the article here?
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28 views

How to communicate two elements of different syntactic/semantic type in the same sentence?

I have the following sentence, NAME is a community that helps each other code better by rating each other's efforts and helps managers pair with other fellow developers I was suggested by the ...
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63 views

How did “stone-cold” come to mean completely?

It seems like such an odd arrangement of words that would, in a certain context, mean "completely." Otherwise, it just means "cold." And my Google-fu has failed me; I'm unable to locate an ...
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52 views

“These kids I tell you” or “kids I tell you” expression meaning

I have read them in few disconnected articles and in conversations but could not understand them completely. "These kids I tell you" or "kids I tell you" expression meaning. What do they mean ?
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21 views

“effective and efficient estimation” or “accurate and efficient estimation”?

In math, we always need to derive some methods and strategies to estimate an unknown thing. For a good method, first it should get an estimation that is as accurate as possible, and second it should ...
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47 views

Phrase Synonymous to “Stop at nothing?”

I'm writing a paper describing a fashion designer who creates incredibly complex and EXTRAVAGANT sets for his runway shows. I want to say he "stops at nothing" or "spares no effort" or "leaves no ...
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51 views

Came “into” fruition?

My friend wrote some copy, explaining that her "company came into fruition because she realized the opportunity..." I've never used "came into fruition" -- only "came to fruition". Is "came into ...
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50 views

where did the phrase “I'll get back to you” originate?

Can't find any info on the origin of the idiom or phrase "I'll get back to you on that".
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31 views

Leave someone out. Discard somebody out. What is wrong with this sentence can someone help

In a demo session a demo students said the sentence. Sometimes you just have to discard somebody out. I didn't know how to fix it but I know he meant sometimes you have to leave somebody out. But how ...
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91 views

What is the meaning when someone say “it doesn't get much weird than Lynda?”

Lynda made a dance performance, it's very weird and many audiences couldn't understand it. Then a guy made a comment "It doesn't get much weird than Lynda?". What does he mean ? Is that "Lynda is ...
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34 views

Is “metonymically imply” redundant?

Is "metonymically imply" redundant in this sentence: The poet shows this distance from the divine by identifying the stomach and womb as definitive traits of the human condition; these organs ...
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73 views

“He could do X for England”. Are there similar expressions in other parts of the English-speaking world to this derogatory sentence?

In Reginald Hill's Dalziel and Pascoe novels, I've read the phrase: "He could [do x] for England. It is always derogatory. It is a lovely phrase! Because I can't put my finger on a quote from these ...
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134 views

Concise Way to Say “Small Tasks can be as Important as Big Tasks”

I need a concise way to explain this idea: Doing the small and easy tasks can be as noble (or more worthwhile) than doing the hard tasks. Examples: 100 people can be more effective by ...
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3k views

What is the origin of “over index”?

I often encounter (and use) this phrase in a context meaning to weight more heavily during decision making than is sensible, or to focus more heavily during a discussion than is warranted. For ...
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139 views

What are the grammatical phrases in this sentence?

I'm analyzing this sentence and scanning it for prepositional, appositive and verbal phrases. In the sentence so far as I can tell there is only one prepositional and no appositive and no verbals (...
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14 views

What is another way to say “Helped me find clarity in my life”?

I'm trying to say that a certain experience helped me realize what I want to do with my life because it helped me better understand myself. I'm trying to find an expression that communicates this that ...
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22 views

Is there an expression, “to have purvey of”?

I am looking for a way to say that one "has full view of." For example: "When touring the construction site, we had ____ of the building's electrical and plumbing systems." What comes to mind is "...
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27 views

in place vs on site

I am reading a book on building construction which describes different constructural members in one chapter. Some of them are not prefabricated items ie. they are formed/fabricated in place/ on site. ...
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“positively/negatively related to” OR “directly/inversely related to ”?

It seems there are two ways to describle when variable X increases as variable Y decreases: X is negatively related to Y, OR X is inversely related to Y. when variable X increases as variable Y ...
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21 views

Identifying the subject in passive voice

What is the subject in: "In the City's Square mile are squeezed 400,000 workers" Would love to get detalied explanation. Many Thanks!
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13 views

what is the word/phrase that corresponds to 'fusion center'?

I have a sentence: Data have to be transmitted from AAA to the fusion center. AAA could be the phrase 'the local places'. However, I think 'the local places' is not a good phrase that matches the ...
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28 views

commercial line — strange?

I don't know if it's only me, but I found this sentence (actually a phrase) extremely annoying. The fact that you can travel with it as a laptop and use it as a drawing tool ... "Use it as a ...
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23 views

Use of a participial phrase in titles

I was making an essay about cystic fibrosis and I stumbled upon a problem regarding the title. I was wondering whether the title I made was grammatical. It was "Cytosis Fibrosis: A Hereditary ...
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meaning of “a game of tease”

what does it mean when someone compares something or some act to "a game of tease"? I think it means like indulging in a game of seek and hide or something like that. Am I right? it is like a game ...
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38 views

Different way to say a common phrase

So, I wanted to know, is there some other way to say, "Courtesy of", as in, say I have a dress, which was given me by someone else, say X, then I would say "Courtesy of X". I hope I am able to clarify ...
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30 views

Are “rent per day” and “rent per month” correct expressions?

Do determine the type of a suggestion in a real estate catalogue, besides "for sale", we must also denote real estate suggested to be rented on daily basis and on monthly basis. Is "per day" correct? ...
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73 views

Best wishes/Good luck …? - [to encourage to proceed trying]

Suppose, someone is working on a long and tedious task (learning English seems not quite fitting, I think, it's too...continuous; I just stumbled upon this question in the context of learning physics (...
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18 views

Cast to vs Cast as

What is the difference between 'cast to' and 'cast as'. For eg. It can be cast to/as an optimization problem as follows. I think that 'cast as' is the correct form, but it sounds odd because of ...
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21 views

Correct Phrase Between “The Art of Fighting” and “The Arts of Fighting”

Are "The Art of Fighting" and "The Arts of Fighting" both correct? If not, which one is accurate?
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26 views

What is the difference between a “leading question” or a question to verify information.

Example: Question: What color is the car? Answer: Red. Reply: So you said the car is, Red? Is this a leading question or a verification? Example: Statement: The tree is on fire. Reply: And you said ...
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46 views

to begin with vs in the first place

I was wondering if it would be grammatically and idiomatically correct to use to begin with in the sense of used at the end of a sentence to talk about why something was done or whether it ...
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40 views

What is the meaning of “the seal and crown”

What is the synonym for "the seal and crown" in the following sentence? I've searched Google, there are not much information about this expression there. There was no grimace, no graces, but a ...
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34 views

What word can be used to describe the person's way of saying

I have a classmate, and she got a job interview out of state and we both are the smartest people in class, but I don't have any reply from any companies yet, so was kinda trying to tell me by telling ...
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96 views

An English Phrase for something that goes against your belief

there is a saying people say when a society neglects an idea because it goes against what they believe in. It goes something like which the society shawn on but the word is not "shawn", I believe that ...
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98 views

Using -rich suffix

I have to following example phrase: A movie, rich with effects Now I'd like transform it using the "-rich" suffix: Effect-rich movie At first, does such phrase sound natural? If no, is ...
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61 views

What does “to cut a look at someone” mean?

Please explain what "to cut a look at someone" means? Example: Jack's mother nodded and cut a look at Jack. Thank you!
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116 views

Is the phrase “out of home” meaning “not at home” correct?

I've run across this phrase "someone is out of home most of the day" meaning "they are not home most of the day" several times. Is it correct and common way of saying "I'm not home often"? Example: ...
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31 views

Australian English for items that are discounted, on sale, or on clearance?

US English user looking for help with AusE. How would you describe to a friend something you bought that was on sale, discounted, or on clearance? Would it be with those terms, or variations on those ...
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an important body of evidence

The sentence I'm asking about is: "An important body of evidence supports sexual differences in anxiety-like behaviors in experimental animals (5 references)". Does the "an important body" mean the ...
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21 views

Term for a storyline that splits in two

Is there a term for a storyline that splits into two points of view? For example, two characters who travel together split paths and plot unfolds in two different timelines. It can probably be applied ...
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31 views

using against the edifice the instruments or stones available in the house

What does the highlighted sentence mean? Is it some kind of saying? What is the meaning of "edifice" here? Source: Read the Cultural Other
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154 views

usage of “only ever”

I have heard and seen "only ever" used as in: "I only ever clean my car when the sun is high." I live in Massachusetts and never heard this usage until recently. I understand the meaning, but wonder ...
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465 views

“In the Last Decades” = “Over Recent Decades”?

Example: This trend has been affected by significant changes in the last decades / over recent decades. I've always believed that "in the last decades" should be followed by "of" and a period of ...
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133 views

“There is nothing like that” vs “There is no such thing” vs “There is nothing similar”

What's the difference in meaning (if any) between these three sentences? Could you give some examples of common situations when you'd use one and no the others?